Salvadoran Court Decried for Letting Case Against 'Santa Marta 5' Continue

Common Dreams

"It is outrageous that the judge is allowing this trial to go forward despite the lack of any evidence of a crime," said one observer.

Brett Wilkins, Common Dreams

Human rights defenders on Wednesday condemned a Salvadoran court's decision to uphold what critics say are politically motivated murder and illicit association charges against five environmental activists.

Miguel Ángel Gámez, Alejandro Laínez García, Pedro Antonio Rivas Laínez, Teodoro Antonio Pacheco, and Saúl Agustín Rivas Ortega were arrested in January 2023 and accused of murdering María Inés Alvarenga—an alleged collaborator with the U.S.-backed Salvadoran regime that killed approximately 75,000 civilians during a 1979-92 civil war—when the men were Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) rebels.

Defenders of the "Santa Marta Five" have highlighted not only the Salvadoran government's failure to show any proof of the men's guilt, but also the fact that perpetrators of civil war-related crimes are protected under a 1992 amnesty agreement between the government and FMLN.


Read the full article here.